Kid Rock is hoping for a late summer/early fall release for his next album — in time for his September shows opening the new Little Caesars Arena in his hometown of Detroit.
“Yeah, we’ll have a record … before the shows, yes. That’s the plan now,” Rock said during a press conference Thursday (Jan. 19) announcing the four concerts — Sept. 12, 13, 15 and 16 — that will serve as grand-opening events for the 20,000-seat arena currently under construction. Rock is working on the set in Nashville, where he’s set up residence in addition to Michigan and Alabama. It will be his 11th studio album and follow-up to 2015’s First Kiss, which debuted at No. 2 on the Billboard 200.
“It’s kind of going back to Rock n Roll Jesus, Devil Without a Cause,” Rock told Billboard. “I’ve got a lot of different things on there — big rock songs, rootsy-sounding stuff, some hard-core rap stuff, kind of all over the board. I do have a lot of songs, but I’m not sure what I’m going to put on the record or how I’m going to release it yet. It’s like the wild west right now, so we’ll see.”
Rock will be doing sporadic shows during the year rather than a full-scale tour, which will wait until the album’s release. He was clearly stoked about opening Detroit’s Little Caesars Arena. “It means a lot to me to be the first act — bigger than me just playing a show,” Rock said Thursday. “After touring for 30 years, proximity becomes kind of a big selling point. And also having a home right down the street here in Detroit makes it very interesting.”
Notifications for Thursday’s announcement indicated “another Detroit franchise announcement” for the arena along with the Detroit Red Wings and Detroit Pistons, the latter of which is moving from the suburban Palace of Auburn Hills. Rock confirmed there have been discussions about building a relationship similar to Billy Joel‘s monthly show at Madison Square Garden in New York, but that “we haven’t gotten into the nuts and bolts about it yet. We definitely spoke about it. We may be able to see this as like a Billy Joel thing. That would definitely be interesting.”
Tom Wilson, president and CEO of Olympia Entertainment, which will operate the arena, added that the idea is definitely in play. “It would make sense,” he said. “If there’s anybody in this city who can sit here on a regular basis, it’s him. He appeals to such a broad spectrum of people, I think he could definitely play on a regular basis.”